The Palestine Board of Trustees met in regular session on September 7, 2006, at 6:00 PM. Trustees answering the roll call were Gene Purcell, Greta Dennison, David Branson, Larry Surrells, Larry Miller and Walter Fritchie.
Margaret Littlejohn was also present.
Visitors present were Bob Taylor, Rick Stork, Scott Campbell, Susie Hancock, John Cummings and associate, and Brian Bradbury of Kemper CPA Group.
The meeting began with all in attendance reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
The minutes of the August meeting and August Special Meeting were unanimously approved as presented.
The proposed closing of Railroad crossings was brought up for further discussion.
Mr. John Cummings stated that the Indiana Railroad would like for the Village Board of Trustees to consider closing the Railroad Crossing at Lincoln Street.
Larry Surrells stated that he had researched the history of Lincoln Street and found that over a hundred years ago Lincoln Street was originally named Main Street. It later became Lincoln Street as a result of the historical event of Abraham Lincoln passing through the area on his way to Springfield. This historical trail should not be interrupted.
Larry Miller moved, in accordance with Roberts Rules of Order, that the Palestine Village Board petition the Illinois Commerce Commission to close one or more railroad crossings within the Village limits of Palestine.
All Trustees voted no. The motion failed.
Larry Miller moved, in accordance with Roberts Rules of Order, that the Palestine Village Board cooperate fully with and support the Indiana RailRoad in its endeavor to close one or more railroad crossings within the Palestine Village limits.
All Trustees voted no. The motion failed.
Mayor Schofield reported that the amended Traffic Ordinance specifically relating to stop intersections has been completed and filed.
Mayor Schofield reported on the progress of the mini-park on Main St. A name for the mini-park has been proposed – Main St Mini-Park.
Brian Bradbury, CPA of the Kemper CPA Group, presented the results of the prior years audit. He reported that the accounting is in good shape. The Sewer Department has not made significant income to make repairs in case of a major breakdown in the system. Funds from the Sewer Department are not being handled according to Standard Accounting Principles, however the Village has insufficient number of employees to follow this practice.
The Robinson-Palestine Water Commission has notified the Village that water rates will be increased by 20 %.
Greta Dennison moved, seconded by Larry Surrells, to formally approve changing the summer work hours for the DPW staff, to four nine hour days and a four hour day on Friday. Motion passed unanimously.
Paperwork for a Petition for Annexation, an Ordinance for Annexation, and an Easement for Public Sidewalks has not been completed for approval. These items will be on the October agenda.
Larry Surrells reported that the extended sidewalk along Washington to the new grade school had been completed at a total cost of $5,814.00, which is approximately $500 under bid.
A request for a sidewalk extension cannot be completed this year due to funding.
Jackie Murdock has filed a $50,000 damage claim against the Village. This suitewill be handled by the Village Insurance company.
Building Maintenance Chairman, Larry Miller, reported that the Village public restrooms have plumbing problems – pipes are rusting, stools are not flushing properly, the handicap auto flusher is not working and countertops need replacing.
Streets and Sidewalks Chairman, Larry Surrells, reported that a crosswalk had been painted on Washington St at the Harrison St crossing and that approved sidewalk replacement work will start next week.
David Branson, Sewer Committee Chairman, reported that the company hired to supervise maintenance of the sewer facilities will be conducting the first survey when the weather permits, and that he will be making a survey of the toilets in both schools to determine a proper sewer charge for the School District.
Jim Clark reported that the police department will be making more patrols in the area of the new grade school. He also reported that evidence of beer at high school football games will be investigated in attempt to discourage alcoholic beverages at school events.
Mayor Pat Schofield reported that two more tour groups have been in town. Both reported very good comments on the neatness and cleanliness of the Village. They also were impressed with the friendliness of the locals.
Larry Surrells noted that there are some vacant apartment houses that should be investigated in relation to possible code violations.
Larry Surrells moved to adjourn.
By consensus the meeting adjourned at 6:35 PM.
Patricia Schofield, President